tv Debate Night in America CNN October 16, 2012 10:30pm-12:00am EDT
i know what it takes to get this to happen and my plan will do that, and one part of the is to make sure we keep china playing by the rules. >> mr. president, two minutes. and then we'll move on to the last question. >> we need to create jobs. and both governor romney and i agree we should lower our tax rate. it's too high. there is a difference on how we would do it. i want to close loopholes that allow companies to duct expenses when they move to china, that allow them to profit offshore. and not have to get taxed so they have tax advantages offshore. all of those changes would make a difference. governor romney wants to expand those tax breaks. one of his big ideas when it comes to corporate tax reform would be to say if you invest overseas, you make profits overseas, you don't have to pay
u.s. taxes. of course, if you are a small business, mom and pop business, or a big business, you have to pay a reduced rate even that governor romney is talking about, and it's estimated that will create 800 million new jobs. problem is, they'll be in china, or india, or germany. that's not the way we'll create jobs here. the way we'll create jobs here, not just create our jobs, but double our exports. we are on pace to double our exports. creating tens of thousands of jobs across the country. that's why we kept on pushing trade deals, but trade deals that make sure american workers and american businesses are getting a good deal. governor romney talked about china. as i already indicated, in the private sector, governor romney invested in phi nears of outsourcing.
not my phrase, what reporters call it. and as far as currency manipulation, the currency has actually gone up 11% since i've been president, because we have pushed them hard. put unprecedented trade pressure on china, and that will help create jobs here. >> mr. president, a really short time for a quick discussion here. ipad, the macs, iphones, all manufactured in china, and one of the reasons is, labor is so much cheaper here. how do you convince a great american company to bring that manufacturing back here? >> the answer is very straight forward, we can compete with anyone in the world as long as the playing field is level. china's been cheating over the years, won by holding down the value of their currency. two, by stealing our international property, designs,
tedesigns, technology. there is a counterfeit apple store, in china, selling counterfeit apple goods. we need to make america an attractive place. >> how much time, candy? >> the president's plan is completely false. >> let me go to the president. we're really running out of time. the question is, we can't get wages like that. it can't be sustained. >> candy, some jobs are not going to come back. low wage, low skilled jobs. i want high wage, high skilled jobs. that's why we have to emphasize manufacturing, investment in advanced manufacturing. when we talk about deficits, if we're adding to our deficit for tax cuts for folks who don't need them and we're cutting investments in research and science that will create the
next apple, create the next new innovation that will sell products around the world, we'll lose that race. if we're not training engineers to make sure they are equipped here in the country, then companies won't come here, those investments are what will help to make sure that we continue to lead this world economy, not just this year, but 50 years from now, 100 years from now. >> government doesn't create job. >> governor, i want to introduce to you barry green, he's going to have the last question to you first. >> i think this is a tough question. each of you what do you believe is the biggest misperception that the american people have about you as a man and a candidate? using specific examples, can you take this opportunity to debunk that misperception and set us
straight. >> thank you. that's an opportunity for me, and i appreciate it. in the nature of a campaign, it seems some campaigns are focused on attacking a person. in the course of that, the president's campaign tried to characterize me as someone that is very different than who i am. i care about 100% of the american people. i want 100% of the american people to have a bright and prosperous future. i care about our kids. i understand what it takes to make a bright and prosperous future again for america. i my life in private sector, not in government. i want to help with the experience i have the american people. my passion probably flows from the fact that i believe in god and i believe we're all children of the same god. i believe we have a responsibility to care for one another. i served as a missionary for my church. serbed as a pastor in my congregation for about ten
years. i've sat across the table from people who were out of work and worked with them to find new work or help them through tough times. i went to the olympics when they were in trouble and try to get them on track, and as governor of my state, i was able to get 100% of my insured. all of my kids, and about 98% of adults. i understand we don't have to settle for what we're going through, gasoline at 4 bucks. don't have to settle for unemployment at a chronically high level. we don't have to settle for 47 million people on food stamps. 57% of kids coming out of college, not able to get work. we don't have to settle for 23 million people looking for a good job. i'll get america working again, on track to the balanced budget. the president hasn't, i will.
i'll make sure we caget our incomes up. and i have done these things. i served as governor and have showed i can get them done. >> last two minutes belong to you, mr. president. >> barry, i think a lot of this campaign and it's been devoted to this notion that i think government creates jobs. that's somehow the answer. that's not what i believe. i believe the free enterprise system is the greatest engine of prosperity the world has ever known, and i believe in self-reliance and individual initiative and risktakers being rewarded. and i believe everybody should have a fair shot, and everybody should do their fair share and play by the same rules. that's how our economy is growing. how we built the world's greatest middle class.
and that is part of what's at stake in this election. a fundamentally different vision of how we move our country forward. i believe governor romney is a good man. loves his family, cares about his faith. but i also believe when he said behind closed doors that 47% of the country considered themselves victims? who refused personal responsibility? think about who he was talking about. folks on social security who have worked all their lives. veterans, who sacrificed for this country. students who are out there trying to hopefully advance their own dreams, but also this country's dreams. soldiers who are overseas, fighting for us right now. people who are working hard every day, paying payroll taxes, gas taxes, but don't make enough income. i want to fight for them.
that's what i have been doing the last four years. because if they succeed, i believe that the country succeeds. when my grandfather fought in world war ii, came back, got a gi bill, that wasn't a hahnout, that was something that advanced the entire country. and i want to make sure that the next generation has those same opportunities, and that's why i'm asking for your vote and another four years. >> president obama, governor romney, thank you for being here tonight. we have come to aen of the town hall debate. we want to thank the people of hofstra university. the next and final debate, monday night in boca raton, florida. don't forget to watch. election day three weeks from today. don't forget to vote. good night.
>> we were just pausing to see if they were going to speak to each other, say anything. the two candidates meeting with their wives right now. you saw the president smiling broadly. pretty good reason to smile during the aftermath of this debate. he did today what he avoided doing, what he failed to do during the first debate, namely, going on the offensive, go ahead and respond. came out swinging from the beginning and didn't stop throughout the entire debate. mitt romney had his moments, febttive, very effective, when he referred to promises that the president made before he came into office at the beginning of his tenure, promises he said the president failed to deliver and delivered a litany of various promises that the president had made which have not yet been delivered. both candidates have strong moments and both at times had weak moments on the libya question, for example, the
president was specifically asked a question he avoided answering. the question, what did you do when you got reports before the attack they needed greater security at that consulate in benghazi. he avoided answering, he went on to express his deep feelings for the four americans that were killed. that was a missed opportunity for mitt romney. he didn't challenge the president specifically on this. he said say, mr. president, you didn't answer that question and then misreported what the president said the day after on september 12th, when the president was in the rose garden and did say, in fact, no acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation. so that was a -- a mistake by mitt romney, but obviously a missed opportunity as well. let me point out to our viewers what is happening now. on stage, with their wives, with their families. let me stand by.
we have a focus group in columbus, ohio, of undecided voters. they will tell us what they liked, what they didn't like. erin burnett is in columbus with them. we'll have a scientific post debate poll that will be coming out, we've asked a bunch of questions, including who won the debate. you'll hear the results coming up fairly soon and a reality check, several reality checks, john berman and tom foreman, standing by to point out factual errors, who was right, who was wrong. i think it's fair to say this debate, the president came out and did what he failed to do in his first debate, set the stage for debate number three. >> i think democrats will be a lot happier with his performance in this debate. let's get a reading. david gergen, what did you think? >> most improved goes to barack obama. a much stronger debate tonight. you can read social media. a lot of democrats fired up.
i must tell you, i think that mitt romney has had two very good debates back to back. i think a solid performance tonight, and i think overall, he looked like he could be president more than two weeks ago. i tried to score it by the questions. i had a lot of questions as draws, and a couple of questions that romney did better on. had a little more edge to the president. i gave him the edge. >> i think the libya question was not a good moment for governor romney. otherwise, in the debate, both sides, as we said, vice presidential debate, both sides left did what they wanted to do no question, democrat intensity will come back. governor romney did a good job of working against the incumbent's record. two weeks ago, it was about governor romney. made it about president obama in the first debate. still quick sand out there, what
is this? what are the american people deciding on election day? if you want to keep the incumbe incumbent, then obama's performance was probably better. this is a competitive election, good debate, wow -- >> does this stop the slide we've seen from president obama? >> we don't know. >> we don't know, but i think this debate was so different, you can argue if it stopped the bleeding, you would understand why. you would understand why. but i will tell you, mitt romney's best moments were focusing on the economic record and saying the middle class has been buried many times, when we have heard before, and also we don't have to settle for this those were key catch phrases. the president's words were romney versus romney. romney as governor on coal and energy and assault weapons,
versus romney new. >> let's play an exchange they had on oil. that will be the first one we look at. >> governor, we have produced more oil -- >> no, no. how much did you cut federal licenses and permits on federal waters. >> there were a whole -- >> i had a question how much did you cut them by? >> i'm happy to answer the question. >> and it is? >> here's what happened. >> the right course for america is a true all of the above policy. i don't think anyone really believes you are a person pushing for oil and gas and coal. you'll get your chance in a moment. i'm still speaking. >> and let's take a look -- another exchange they had on coal. >> when i hear governor romney say he's a big coal guy, and keep in mind when governor, when you were governor of massachusetts, you stood in front of a coal plant and pointed at it and said this plant kills and took great pride
in shutting it down, and now suddenly you're a big champion of goal. so what i've tried to do is be consistent. with respect to coal, we made the largest investment in clean coal technology to make sure even as we produce more coal, we're producing it cleaner and smarter. >> some republicans i was corresponding with felt romney dominated the stage in those exchanges. and some democrats felt he was being rude or disrespectful to the president. >> welcome to polarized america. most will watch through their party's prism. a, did they do business with their base? the undecided slice is so small, the most important thing, keep yours, keep them out and keep them energized. the president tactically being smart tonight, go through where he has started to slump,
especially the state of ohio. the china attacks and coal attacks from governor romney are working. and the president came to rebut them. and whether it was contraception or equalway, the president came in knowing where the bleeding was. >> interesting. you said the libya question did not work out well for governor romney, even though the president didn't answer the question that was asked. even though the gentleman called it an embassy in benghazi, it was a consulate. it worked out for president obama because he was forceful in his response? >> no question, there are legitimate policy questions about what happened there. when governor romney jumped up to interject. the president did use terror the day after, and mr. romney said he didn't. candy fact checked him in front of the american people. he went in and mentioned six times the youtube video other in
the administration knew it was nothing to do with the youtube video. very legitimate questions about the interagency cooperation about that, no question -- >> i thought that -- >> one moment, where there was a bit of a deer in the head lites. >> i thought the president was most visibly angered on libya. he said that was offensive. >> interesting to seat lines of undecided voters on our screen. >> he said that's not the way i do business as commander in chief. these are people's lives. i know these people, i am responsible for them. i see them when they come back and talk. >> i know they are champing at the bit too. >> this was -- the president of the united states was the president of the united states tonight. he -- there are only two things i think people are looking for. and one is, are you a strong leader? are you on my side? he was clearly a strong leader tonight. he was passionate, focused, and i thought he went over the line, when romney went over the line
and challenged his integrity, and the president said that's not who i am, that will go down as one of the great moments of the american debate. and beyond that, romney may have hurt himself with women. here, kwt be equal pay for equal work. he wants to figure out ways for moms to get home in time to cook dinner. that's not the right answer to that question. i'm sorry. the right answer is that america's government should be a partner to american mothers to make sure by law -- >> a quick response. >> i think -- i thought a lot of women in america saw a debate tonight where two hue school jocked didn't like each other very much and i'm not sure they are going to be turned on by this debate. as much as a love the the first debate, i thought this one was
less. obama was angry, had daggers in his eyes for mitt romney all night long. his pitch went up as this debate started. i thought mitt romney was not as strong a lot of the debate as president obama was. i thought mitt romney was much more pleasant, much more like somebody you would have in your living room. >> shockingly, i disagree well that a little b with that a little bit. president obama needed to present america he had a plan for the term. talked about his planner for education, balanced approach to deficit reduction, investing excess money into infrastructure. we haven't heard about that in the last debate. strategically, he fought for the american people for the middle class. >> in terms of what they said,
flatout draw, the governor extremely effective in talking about the things that president obama promised and failed to do. the president was good particularly in the last debate, punching back at the president's record. this is where i give the edge to mitt romney. he did not talk about the future, his whole campaign has to take mitt romney down, and that only gets you so far. >> i -- >> i agree and disagree. look, i think that president obama did exactly what a lot of democrats wanted him to do for a long time. punch back, point out the holes and go through the holes. he did that very effectively. on top of his game. come back to mitt romney. i thought he had a better strategy, because he kept on coming back to jobs and most effective when he talked about that. >> and i don't think he presented an overarching vision
that people felt like they were understood. he felt like a guy with a little bit of this, little wit of that. >> we'll see mitt romney and his wife talking about the crowd. we're doing some fact checking. let's go to wolf. >> a lot of folks were stated. some were facts. others not necessarily so. trying to figure out whether the candidates were actually telling the truth in tonight's debate. john berman ready with the several of reality checks. >> exclusive exchange on oil drilling and energy production on federal land. under president obama production on government land is down. >> production on government land is down. >> no, it isn't. >> production on government land is down 14%. and i'm guessing it's now 9%. >> it's not true. >> it's absolutely true. >> you heard 14%. the department of energy says
production on federal levels dropped from 2,000 in 2010. and contribute that largely to the aftermath of the bp deepwater horizon bill. the 14% drop in the last year is true, but misleading. doesn't tell the whole story of federal production on lands. on oil, the president made his own claims about production on federal lands. >> >> we've opened up public lands, we are drilling more than the previoused administration. >> even with the one-year drop, there has been more drilling per year than the obama administration than during the last term of the bush administration, so our verdict on what the president said is true. you can see they went after each other here really cherry picking their own facts. >> much more reality checks
coming up. thanks very much. let's go to the spin room. jessica yellin has a guest first. >> i'm with david plouffe, one of the president's most senior advisers. you have to be feeling good tonight. much better than the last debate. the president far less politely, let's say tonight. do you -- i'm sure you believe he reversed his slide at least. stopped the slide. what do you think he accomplished specifically? close the gap with women? >> we have a significant lead with women, have had during the duration of the campaign. i think the president laid out clearly where he wants to take the print. his plan to crow the economy, and exposed governor romney, tax plans, and the president said it's a sketchy deal. governor romney wilted during the scrutiny.
and very important moments in the discussion about libya obviously. governor romney looked like sun playing politics and the president looked like a resolute commander in chief. the women's health topic, an important issue. we think the president made real progress tonight in really animating differences between these two candidates. >> one of the consistent themes throughout the night, the president arguing that mitt romney not fully honest. is there a challenge for the president in making the campaign too much at this point about mitt romney and not enough about what president barack obama would do for americans in the section term. >> out there, tonight, the president laid out his plan to reduce deficit, foreign policy vision. i think the president is talking every day where he wants to take the country. there are big differences. and remarkable moment. governor romney could not have
been more dishonest, when he said he doesn't support limiting contraception. he supported legislation that would let employers limit that. we'll make sure every voter knows that over the next 21 days. i thought it interesting how they viewed the growing economy. barack obama is middle out. romney is top down. >> you predicted in the spin room, if it was going to have an effect, the president's poor performance would van effect, we'd see it in the polls, we did. do you think the president will start doing better in the next two or three days? >> we always thought it would be a close race. i said you will see it in nevada, ohio, iowa. governor romney does not have a credible electoral path to the wous. >> are we seeing a movement in ohio, coming in the next five days.
>> we have liked where we've been for the last four years, the president is going to go out and fight has hard as he can. >> you are not saying -- thank you so much, david blouf. and you can see how important the women's vote is for this campaign. why they are hitting so hardest personally on contraception issue. >> jessica, thank you. from one part of the spin room to another part. jim acosta with bobby jindal, a major supporter. >> that's right, wolf this is governor jindal's first after answer in a post debate spin room. we appreciate your time. i'm sure you feel governor romney won the first debate. tonight did he go 2-2. >> absolutely. president obama spent no time at all speaking on any specific plans, and one of the telling questions, was i voted for you four years ago, why should i vote for you now? look at all of the broken
promises. he promised he would cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term, hasn't dup that. promised to get the economy turned around, in three years, 23 million under employed/unemployed americans. and broken promise after broken promise. not once did he said what he would do in the second term. the other point was very powerful, talking about the libya situation. the president owes us a clear explanation of what happened there, and to make sure it doesn't happen again, and we would get the perpetrators, think about this. >> let me ask you about that. one point, we saw governor romney chime in, saying that the president did not refer to that attack on the consulate in benghazi as an exact of terror. go back and look at what the president said on step 12th, he asked refer to as an act of terror. do you think governor romney stoum belled? >> not at all. he venchsed the video and
youtube six different times. we heard three different explanations from the white house. we heard ambassador rice speak again to tv cameras on sunday and this is the first explanation. >> he his facts wrong. he was inaccurate. >> he used act of terror, generally, didn't identify it specifically. later, it was said it was not premeditated act of tron. the white house said it was out in response to the video, u.n., different times referenced the video second, a response to the video, but an act of terrorism spontaneously occurred, and the third, an act of terrorism, no response to the video no protests. the president, explanation, has now changed three different times. >> let me ask you about the body language. they got in each other's personal space. did you expect that? >> look i don't believe the president, obviously last debate
didn't show up. i'm sure this time his advisers said dnk all the red bull you can. his problem is record. you can combine the speaking talents past leaders, and he still couldn't cover up four failed years. >> wolf, back to you. from the governor's standpoint, the president had his red bull and i think governor jindal did as well. >> both campaigns claiming victory right now, we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer, we're in the cnn election center, for comprehensive analysis of the second debate between governor romney and president obama. much more contentious than the first debate. times when both candidates really went after each other. we'll be very interested to see the results of our scientific poll of debate watchers, people who watch the debate.
we'll find out who they think won, that's coming up in a "p" b little bit. and then we'll continue to pore through the candidates' answers to get to the bottom of who was right and who was wrong. also, erin burnett standing by with uncommitted voters in the very important swing state of ohio. we'll show you points during the debate when they gave candidates the highest and lowest marks. and also waiting to speak with our own kahne crowley, the moderator of the rather conten contentious debate. hear what canned hooe has to say first, right here on cnn. during the debate, president obama renewed his attack of mitt romney's tax plan. saying he was not explaining how he's going to pay for lowering tax plans. >> how are you going to do it, which loopholes will you close?
he can't tell you. the fact that he only has to pay 14% on his taxes, when a lot of you are paying much higher, he's already taken that off the board, capital gains will continue to be at a low rate. we won't get money that way. we haven't heard from the governor any specific s beyond big bird and eliminating funding for planned parenthood in terms of how he would pay for that. governor romney, a very successful investor. governor, if somebody came to you with a plan that said i want to spend you seven or $8,000. you wouldn't do it. the math doesn't add up. >> of course they add up. i was -- i was someone who ran businesses for 25 years.
i ran the olympics, and balanced the budget. when we're talking about math that doesn't add up, how about 4 $4 trillion in deficit over the last four years? $5 trillion. that's math that doesn't add up. we have a president talking about someone's plan in a way that's completely foreign to what my real plan is. and then we have his own record, four consecutive years where he said he would cut the deficit in half. instead, he's doubled it. we've gone to $16 trillion in national debt. if the president were re-elected. we'd go to more debt. this puts us on the road to greece. >> a taste of the flavor. a taste of what was going on
during this debate. i want to go to soledad o'brien, standing by with a special guest. our own kahne crowley. before you say a word, candy, job well done. >> absolutely. i'll second that. you know, it's interesting, we're waiting to hear what the polls have to say about who won or lost. but, candy, it felt from here very contentious, not just between the two men on the stage, but also sometimes they were turning on you, trying to overtalk you and i think it was mitt romney who said no when you tried to make a point. >> there is so much at stake, so little time, i expected them to come at me when i would try to rain them in, and when they are going, i don't want to have some sort of -- here is an artificial, you need to be quiet right now, this balance you are trying to strike, and they just want to get everything they've
ever known that even possibly has to do with the subject, i didn't take it personally or anything, i don't think they meant it personally, but when they first started and it was an energy question, who knew. i thought tax reform, something, boy, and we were so over time, but they were so good sort of being in each other's face, and i thought that's not true. here is the debate. so here we go i didn't take it personally at all, and i thought the first part of the especially was fun to watch, and i hopefully enlightening to people. >> very interesting. you told people, no clapping, turn off blackberries, turn off cell phones. two moments when people clapped. and under the question of libya it was when the president said he stood in the rose garden and
said this was an act of terror, and the exact quote was no acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation and went on from there, in a way you had to fact check on both sides. >> well, i knew the president said acts of terror, this kin of came up before, and i heard him that day. what mitt romney was going for, and he thought he picked that one wrong fact. the president did refer to it as an act of terror, and the president kept looking at me going, you know, leaving, you know, you know that's what cause the applause. and this side over here. >> and you fact checked again. you said you are correct that they didn't know for a couple of weeks that it wasn't related to the tape and there was no riot outside the consulate, and that side of the room clap.
i was trying to bring clarity to the conversation. >> behind us, they are beginning clear the stage back here a little bit. uncommitted voters and politicians, barely pry them apart. they love to have every wolf wants to ask a question. >> candy, what was the biggest surprise to you during this at the bait? >> how easily you could go -- on the sunday show, i like having a little time. i thought, 7 1/2 minutes to discuss immigration, that seemed like an okay amount of time, but we wanted to get to guns, to so many things we didn't have a chance to get to. it goes so quickly, even when we were within time constraints.
this will be over before you know it. five things i want to ask all of them. you have to take a chance, do i ask all of these questions? i tried to opt to get all of the questions. the time fly things takes me by surprise. >> anderson has a question. >> as a moderator, you catch things that the cameras are focused on, the level of personal animosity, palpable? did it feel like there was personal animositian between these two you two? >> you know, as you know, the camera kind of enlarges things, but sitting on this stage, i didn't think it was personal animosi animosity. i felt like the calendar was closing in, the next debate all about foreign policy, they knew this was the last chance to do it. so they were both incredibly intense, both came to play, but i didn't totally get kind of we
hate each other vibe at all. i got an urgency vibe from both of them. >> candy, i know normally when you are not moderating the debate, are you watching the social media feeds and watching trit twitter. conservatives were saying libya, libya, libya, please. they thought that was the best possible moment for the president to take a whack at the president, and he didn't seem to. it was one of the moments where conservatives were disappointed. that leads me to my question, which you called through all of these questions which undesclared voters brought in this morning. this is afternoon is a big concern of yours. how did you decide which ones to choose? >> it's funny, not one thing that decided. it was a multitude of things, we wanted to cover subjects that may be folks hadn't heard but
were still interested in. >> immigration, gun control. >> and women's issues, a big question. climate change people, i had the question. again, we knew that the economy was still the main thing, so you knew you kind of wanted to go with the economy, maybe gas prices again, something that hasn't come up. that was part of it. part of it was a variety of questions nah were important, but not yet been kind of fully aired in this large of a forum. the next question was to make sure that we had some variety in we didn't want all white guys, all white women, we tried to get some kind of with what we were given, some kin of variety in the questions. we also were thinking where are we going to go with this that's new. >> we'll continue the conversation. we have lots of questions. let's go back to wolf with an interview. >> back to the spin room, jessica yellin standing by with a special guest. the senator from massachusetts.
john kerry, who played mitt romney in a debate rehearsal for the president. >> that's right, wolf, and senator kerry right here with me now. you must be pleased tonight. the president much more aggressive this time. some people observing both men were quite in one another's face at times. what were your thoughts on this? >> look, everybody is going to he expect me to say that the president did well. i think the president overwhelmed mitt romney tonight with facts and a vision for the future. let me be very specific. on libya. mitt romney tried to suggest -- didn't say what it was. the president and candy crowley backed him up. called it an act of terror. what happened in benghazi was an act of terror. what happened in new york on september 11th was an act of terror. and the republicans are trying to play a game, saying that's
not a terrorist attack. please, then they lost this debate, and they are clearly playing games. let me go further, the president made it clear mitt romney's tax plan does not add up. $8 trillion is not reduced by 2$2.5 trillion mil of taxetax d. even women, he tried to disavow that he would get rid of women's contraception. you just can't trust this guy. >> the president made these points that romney has been inconsistent in his view. do you -- are you worried at all that it could be perceived that the president is too aggressive?
>> no, the president could have been more aggressive tonight given some of the things that mitt romney said. he felt back on a few kioccasio. this is the presidency of the united states, the future of our country. it deserves candidates that tell the truth and talk fast. mitt romney keeps changing, we know this in massachusetts. it tells you a lot that in the state he was governor of, he can even contest this race. massachusetts knows him well, and he is losing by 25 points. why? because everybody in massachusetts knows he did different things, lost 45,000 manufacturing jobs, raised the taxes on the middle class, he. >> i have to throw it back to wolf. >> i'm telling you, in the next days, all of the inconsistencies and untruths we'll see.
tonight the mitt romney campaign began to unravel formally and publicly and dramatically. >> you can hear the message very consistent with the president. making the case he is changing positions if you didn't get that from that interview already. >> we heard it directly. i want to stay in the spin room. jim acosta has senator rob portman with him. he played the president in all of mitt romney's dress rehears l rehearsals as well. go ahead. >> that's right, wolf. i want to pick up on what senator kerry was saying a few moments ago to our jessica yellin. he says tonight's the night mitt romney's campaign started unraveli unraveling, is your take? >> no, it is not unraveling at all. what's unraveling is the president's policies. it's not even just middle east, syria, egypt, iran four years
closer to getting a bomb. what's happening in the middle east is not necessarily successful. i can't do a better job than mitt romney on domestic policy. why will it be better for me in the next four years? mitt romney had a perfect response. this is what happened. a devastating critique, and he said what is the president offering? more of the same. instead, mitt romney offered a pro growth economic agenda. >> the president was much more aggressive tonight, much more than the first debate. did you prepare him enough, governor romney, for that coming? >> we all knew the president was going to be more aggressive tonight. i think his base appreciated it. the president on the attack, came out swinging, said he was going to do that. you can change your style, but that doesn't change your record. he didn't defend it when he went
through the higher food stamps, and unemployment zone. he hasn't unchanged his image for the future. >> is it a good moment when mitt romney asked president obama if he had checked his pension lately. it seems he gave the president an open shot there? >> the president was attacking, on the attack, and he said, gosh, you have investments in china, well, so does the president apparently in his pension. the president may not have known that, but mitt romney made that point. that was an opportunity to say that's not the issue. the issue is who will get the economy back on track and mitt romney laid out a clear agenda. >> on the attack? the consulate in anybobenghazi. i talked to bobby jindal earlier and he said it was a general
reference to an act of terror. is that what the romney's campaign at this point? >> we'll go back to the record. and he used act of terror in a general sense, but, listen, for five days they said the option. how can you say anything other than that. five days later, you had the u.s. ambassador to the united nations on all of the shows, including yours, saying this was not an act of terrorism, this was in response to a youtube video. a demonstration. why did they do that? and second, is why wasn't the security there? wolf, this walk and forth over that attack in libya will continue even after tonight's debate. >> i'll read the exact quote. what the president said on the day after the attack, no acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of that nation. jim, thanks very much. we're awaiting the results of our poll of tonight's debate watchers. a scientific poll, you will see
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. well, our expert team of producers and researchers, reporters, have been busy figuring out if candidates are telling the truth. john berman back with another reality check. >> we've been talking about the benghazi moment. we wanted to lay out the facts. the president claims the day after the attacks there, he did call it an act of terror. romney seemed to suggest he did not. let's listen. >> there were other issues associated with this tragedy.
there were many days that passed before we knew it was a spontaneous demonstration or a terrorist attack. >> the day after the attack, governor, i stood in the rose garden and told the american people and the world that we were going to find out exactly what happened. that this was an act of terror. >> romney went on to disagree. what are the facts? let's listen carefully to what the president said in the rose garden the morning after the attack. >> no acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter the character or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for. today, we mourn four more americans who represent the very best of the united states of america. we will not waiver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act. >> you heard it right there, he called it an act of terror. the verdict is true. however, the days and weeks that followed, president obama
avoided using the word terrorism, asked directly and does it get into the issue of does it blame the film? the day after, he called it an act of terror. wolf. >> john, thank you. both candidates talked about reducing the deficit. our tom foreman has a reality check on that tom. >> these candidates have made this a deficit a corner stone of this election, the difference of how much the united states government is spending and how much it is taking in in tax revenue and they did indeed talk about it tonight. listen. >> i'll get us on track for a balanced budget. we will help families and create incentives to grow jobs in this country. >> if we're serious about reducing the deficit. again w a moral obligation to the next generation, we have to make sure
the wealthy to a little bit more. >> this is the deficit for this year. $1 trillion, $90 billion. every man, woman, and child would have to kick in $3,500. each candidate said i can reduce the deficit. how can they do that? they agree on certain thing. we'll have to control spending at the government level. rewrite the tax code, get the economy really moving, because that's going to create all that revenue that will solve the problem. but beyond that, they don't agree much. let's look at the romney plan. everything that mitt romney wants to subpoena on running the government the way he would like to, and all the money he needed, he is not going to get it he will have a deficit. less money. how will he fill the gap? with tax cuts. that will initially make the deficit worse, so he will offset those with deductions, and go after the deductions, loopholes out there, things that people use to avoid paying taxes.
he likes to suggest he won't go after mortgages or health care deductions, things that middle class people rely on. that's the problem. economists say ev, some of them say eventually you will have to hit the middle class or you will watch the deficit get bigger and bigger. >> what about president obama's plan? does it hold up better to scrutiny? >> let's look at his plan. he would like to have all of this money to cover it he won't. he will also have a deficit. how does he want to deal with it? let's tax the wealthy more. popular idea in polls, but let's look at it. for every one person that makes that much money, there are this many who don't make that much. would you have to tax this
person at a much lhigher level o make up the difference. that is a level they are not willing to talk about, and the president doesn't add up, and the math doesn't add up in either one of the plans based on the details we have so far. we need many, many more. so the basic claim from both sides, i can reduce the deficit, we'll give a big grade of "i" for incomplete. neither one has given enough answer to give us much faith. >> even if we had all of the details it seems both candidates would face huge political problem problems passing anything like they want to. >> a political reality that almost anyone in the country can see. congress is divided. house under the control of the republicans, senate under the control of the democrats, and unless the election unin inighte
parties, it's hard to see how you will get agreement , which makes the future for the deficit pretty bleak. >> i love the reality checks, you and john doing excellent job. back to anderson. >> thank you very much. the whole acts of terrorism thing, i don't think it's as clear a slam dunk as obama campaign would like it to be. in his speech, he wasn't saying this was an act of terror previous to where he said acts of terror, talking about 9/11 he didn't reference the video in particular i think it's open to debate. >> what the president said the day after, governor romney, in the fact check environment, this should be a problem for the president. not a problem for what governor romney said in the debate. he was wrong about what the president did generically refer to an act of terror.
we have a question. what did governor romney say instead of what did governor romney do. a choice of words, a poor one. fact checking, and i would make this argument. done in studios in washington and new york and talk about undecided voters and talk about libya, and who has an economic plan? i vote the latter. >> this is a murky situation. candy had it right. romney got it wrong on one fact, but there is a bigger story. but surely we won't spend a lot of time litigating this. so much bigger issues. >> let's bring in candy. candy, a moment which obviously now both campaigneds will be focusing on. tell us your thoughts during that moment. >> well, again, i heard the president's speech at the time. i sort of re-read a lot of stuff about libya, i knew we'd
probably get a libya question, so i wanted to be up on it. so we knew that the president had said these acts of terror won't stand or whatever the whole quote was. and i think actually, because right after that, you did turn around and tell us that you spent two weeks this was about a tape and a riot outside the benghazi consulate. he was right in the main, but he picked the wrong word. they will parse and we know what the definition of is is, but, you know, in the end, i think john's probably right. i think there is a lot more to do with jobs and the debt crisis, all of that stuff. i think it was one of those moment moments, and i could feel that here. when you say that here, you are not expecting -- actually, he did call it an act of terror, and when, you know, half the crowd clapped for that, and the
other half clap, but they told us this was caused by a tape. in the trust of what governor romney was saying, which is why i went back and said that. i think he picked the wrong way to go about it. >> candy, it's john. you are sitting right there one of the questions going in, neither candidate looked at his watch. neither candidate hugged one of the voters in the audience, but who of them might make the better connection? governor romney used names frequently, circled back. i know you are preparing the next question, but from voters on the stage that are with you, did any think one candidate did better than the other in connecting? >> i don't think they actually did, to tell you the truth. i really did get the sense -- we spent some time with them today. the uncommit edness was certainly genuine, so it seemed to us, and i think they were all
so pleased to be there, and they were so kin of in awe of the process, that afterward, wasn't this great, and the president said that. they were talking about the exchanges. one guy said i thought for a minute, they were going to hit each other, and i actually never felt that, i told you, i didn't feel personal animosity. but they found all of the things in 90 minutes. tense, takes a lull, goes back up again. but i think that they enjoyed the scene. >> from here, it felt very contentious. i thought they were really -- >> i got that same sense. >> just from sitting up here. looking at them, saying -- >> very close to each other, seemed very hostile toward each other, and i thought hostile and sometimes back to you when they wouldn't answer the questions or the audience members' questions
who would be ignored. >> one of the things that you are rightly being applauded for is not letting them get away with things. you tried. sometimes both of them -- >> there were so many times that they got away. >> but you tried. but i think it would be interesting for the audience to know that you made sure you were in a physical position to do that. >> one of the thins that struck me. and jim lehrer, the debate he wanted to have, but i thought when he looked at it, so hard to take come man of a stage when you are sitting down and they are towering over you, so when i came in, saw the stage, and i also have back problems, i will say that. i said i want to stand. i want to stand up, because we're on the same level. jim lehrer was down, looked like an orchestra pit. i was in the hall that day, and he was so much lower.
i wanted to be able when i could, we're done, it's actually this person's turn and be in some kind of -- >> being higher helped you do that. >> it made me felt like they had to somehow -- they still ignored me at times, but i felt like they had to contend with me in a way. >> hey, candy -- >> when it comes to the way viewers saw them, it was at their peril. >> david gergen has a question for up. >> hi, there. >> dave, i'm sorry. just told we got our first poll results. we'll come back to candy. >> we have the first results in from the scientific poll registered voters who watched tonight's debate. here are the results. 46% say president obama won the debate. 39% say governor rom won the debate. 73% say president obama did better than expected. 10% say he did worse.
16% said that he did the same as they expect. governor romney, 37% of the debate watchers say he did better than expected. 28% say he did worse, 33% say governor romney did about the same as they had expected. more results, more answers to other questions. and the sample watchers were 33% democrat, 33% republican. that indicates that the sample of debate watchers about 8 points more republican than the average of cnn polls taken in 2012 of all americans, so the respondents were more republican than the general public would suggest. in this poll shows it was basically a draw as far as those who actually watched the debate were concerned. slight edge, 46% for president obama. 39% for governor romney. anderson, some numbers to
digest. >> yes, let's digest that a bit. on first blush, what do you make? >> governor romney won by a bigger margin in the first debate. no question, people are watching the debate. scored point to the president, and i believe the natural connection was, again, the numbers moving largely because of the intensity of the base. >> and more republicans were watching this debate than democra democrats. the big question out of this evening, was this win for the president, it is enough to change the momentum of the race? and we don't really know the answer to that. >> when will we know? days from now with more polls? >> i think that the president -- i think what we can safely say tonight is that the president did well enough to blunt romney's momentum. that was very important for a state like ohio. we talked about how the
president went in with a lead in ohio, a critical state, and you blunt momentum, it puts them in a better position to win. a horse race down to the end nationally. but that's an important advance for the president. >> i'm not sure that that's entirely what we saw. there's a difference between the president igniting his debate and blunting romney's momentum tonight. romney -- you know, something changed in the first debate. mitt romney was an acceptable republican, not the scary guy obama has been painting. all of a sudden there is an alternative to barack obama. that all changes tonight. that mitt romney, i'm not sure he was slowed down at all. >> but i think with women, look at social media that binder full of women. 100,000 people on facebook saying that was a bad thing. single moms responsible for gun
violence. i think he hurt himself with single women. >> more with our panel, more with our group of undecided voters. more results with the scientific poll. we'll be right back. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] at&t. the nation's largest 4g network. now covering 3000 more 4g cities and towns than verizon. at&t. rethink possible.
the commitments i've made, i've kept, and for those i haven't been able to keep, it's not for lack of trying, and we'll get it done in a second term. you should pay attention, because governor romney has made some commitment as well, and i would suspect he will keep those too. >> let's go to columbus, ohio, the capital of the key
battleground state. let's go to erin burnett, who watched with undecided voters. give us flavor of what they thought? >> i love watching the focus groups. all so intense. everyone said they never watched a debate the way they do when they score every single moment. a similar response. victory for obama over romney. a little interesting here, wolf. 14 of 35 focus group members said the president won. six said mitt romney won. but 15 said neither one of them won. they said it was a draw. so that is a pretty interesting thing. in terms of some of the ratings overall, a trust for the president, his likability, some of those ratings improved post debate from predebate among focus group members. and a lot of people like the flash poll thought the president did better than mitt romney did better. when it comes to votes, how much did each men pick up tonight if the undecided group had to vote,
obama picked up seven votes, romney picked up five votes. in terms of better vision for the country, i want to make sure i get this. 18 people ended thinking mitt romney, 17 barack obama jenny, let me ask you, who do you think won this debate tonight? >> i think it was close, but i would have to give a slight edge to obama. >> why was that? >> i -- there were two times i thought that he was -- he stayed very on point, talked about precisely what he had accomplished in his first term, whereas former governor romney, was a little more general and kept referring back to massachusetts, and there were different things where i thought obama was more precise on his previously record. >> andy, what did you think?
>> i thought both candidates fought hard. every question kind of evolved back to the four or five go-to points we heard the entire campaign, and then it deteriorates as to what guy said or what he's going to do or not going to do. >> that was something our focus group, and maybe you in ohio are just so scarred from all of the ads you have to see. and the negativity. they don't like the negativity. you start off saying this is what i like to do, the scores higher, this is what the other guy did wrong, a real plunge on the ratings. more on the highs and lows soon. back to you. >> people don't like the negativity, but negative ads work. >> people complain the whole campaign, i hate the negative ads, i hate the negative ads, and you ask why did you vote for x, or y? and they say the negative ads.
it's the way it is. if you live in one of the eight or nine states. most of the country are walking, what are they talking about? oits it's only playing out eight or nine states, and it's crazy. both campaigns said they did what they needed to do. poll relatively close. president wins in our poll, but not by the big margin governor romney did in the first debate. they say they won, and the question is, we will see what they really think in the next few days. by the time they debate next monday night, the last debate, they will have the polls, they will have the polls in the states. coming into this debate, after the first debate. governor romney picked up nevada, colorado, ohio, iowa. virginia, and florida. this is important momentum for romney. those are all states that president obama won four years ago, but states gorgets w. bush carried not only in 2004, carried all but iowa in 2000. so the romney campaign believes these are states that have republican dna in recent
presidential elebzs that are not big democratic years. they think improved standing heading into the critical last 0 days, and you talk to people after the debate, you score this for the president, anything significant change. here is the question. watch in these states, watch in the states in the next few weeks. obviously candidates will contest all of them for now, but very soon, the gold states are tossup states. very soon, michigan in play, pennsylvania in play, or will we fight it out in knees nine states? as we fight it out, watch things like this. this will change even before the debate next monday. take this down, here we go here, bring this up. what we want to see. tv ad counts. this is what the campaign is doing. this looks confusing. let's just go here. this is the state of ohio. very confusing, excuse me for switching stids. see the blushes. big, dark blue, obama campaign. lighter blue, pro obama super
back. dark red is romney. pink is superpac. look at democratic spending campaign in ohio. and obama spending heavily in ohio. trying to protect the lead. anderson, watch how this plays out. they have to make critical resource decisions. tv money go? where does the president go? romney go, vice president and paul ryan go? they will do their own focus groups tonight. see fol polls the next few days. time we're here for the last debate, something on the map will change. >> i need a drink, and i don't even drink. tom foreman with another reality check. one of the big topics of the debate. immigration. new numbers in the post debate poll. they just came in, that in a moment. one is for a clean, wedomestic energy future
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the greatest failure we've had with regard to gun violence in some respects is what is known as fast and furious. which was a program your honor this administration and how it worked exactly, i think we don't know precisely, but where thousands of automatic and ak-47 type weapons were given to people that ultimately gave them to drug lords and they used those weapons against their own citizens and killed americans with them. >> we have more results coming in from our poll of registered voter who's watched tonight's presidential debate and say president obama won the debate. here is a closer look at their views. we asked, who did the debate make you more likely to vote for? look at the results. 25% said president obama.
25% said governor romney. 48% said neither. we also asked, what is seen to be a stronger leader? 49% said governor romney. 46% for president obama. we asked, who was more likeable? 47% said president obama. 41% said mitt romney. we also asked who spent more time attacking his opponent. 49% said president obama. 39% said governor romney. 44% of debate watchers said president obama seemed to care more about the audience members, compared to 40% for mitt romney. 45% say romney answered the questions more directly, compared to 43% for president obama. remember, this is a scientific poll that reflects the views of people who actually watched the debate. our sample indicates 33% of those who tuned in tonight were democratic, 33% were republican.
that sample is eight points more republican than an average of cnn polls taken in 2012 of all americans so the respondents in this poll were more republican than the general public. the numbers are coming in. take a look overall of all of the numbers, pretty much a slight, slight edge to the president. but i would say that the poll shows pretty much a draw. >> interesting to see when you look will it actually change your vote? who makes it more likely to vote for? 25%, 25%. the next question we have to figure out, on the economy, number one issue, did one candidate come out ahead? >> the 2004 campaign beat john kerry. john kerry beat george bush. it doesn't change their voting behavior. what you have to ask after this debate, given the first debate, using baseball analogy.
mitt romney scored five runs in the first three innings. the president scored three runs. it doesn't stop the president's slide, it's just slowed it. >> one poll, it did oversample for republicans, and other samples out there, all of them show that voters thought president obama won tonight. what you will see, is the democratic base shoring up, democratic leaning independents going home and obama start to move the other direction, his numbers start to go up. >> i'm not sure about that. forgive me. i'm a red sox fan, my team not even in play. yankees fans know tigers won tonight. but they won't vote for the tigers, they will still root the yankees. who you vote for is a different question. i think alex is right, the
president had the baton in this race, and the first debate, he allowed mitt romney to be his equal, be an incredible candidate for president romney made a successful case against the first-term record. >> more polling now. we'll go to that, talk about it with wolf. >> a little more to dissect. including issue number one, the economy. poll of registered voters that watched tonight's debate say president obama won, but when we dig deeper to the numbers, romney did score points with viewers tonight. look at this. 58% -- 58% of debate watchers say romney would better handle the economy. 48 first say president obama would. issue number one. 49% say romney would better handle health care, compared to 46% for president obama. we asked who would better hanel the issue of taxes.
51% say romney. 44% say president obama. 59% say romney would do a better job on the deficit, 36% say president obama would do a better job on the deficit. remember, this is a scientific poll, once again, repeat it, reflects the views only of people who watched, actually watched this debate, our sample indicates 33% of those who tuned in tonight were democrat, democratic, 33% were republican. that sample is about eight points more republican than an average of cnn polls taken in 2012 from all americans, once again, respondents in this poll were more republican than the general public. >> candy crowley in just a moment. john king, you were talking about these numbers. >> american voters, not just those who watched the debate. if other americans think romney would best hanel health care,
the economy, deficit, governor romney will win the election. >> when you look at those issues, president obama clearly out front tonight. >> it's almost as though mitt romney has gotten back the edge. early polling, people always thought mitt romney better able to handle the economy. and he is very good when he sits there, going, wait a minute, here is what's happening to the poverty rate. he is very precise, that's when, you know, these point charts are really good. he has a mind, and it really shows. a mind for the economy. one thing out on the table there. we all talked how this was going to be, nice to each other because the people were sitting there. here is my thought. this wasn't the undecideds they were talking about. they were talking to their bases. >> a quick break. more with our panelists and
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